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Model 3 winter rims

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by ChooseGreen, Nov 27, 2016.

  1. ChooseGreen

    ChooseGreen Member

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    I have searched around about winter rims for my upcoming Model 3, but haven't found the answer to my question.

    Can I get basic rims for winter use for my upcoming Model 3 (non-performance model)?

    My plan was to get a basic set of steel rims and have a decent set of winter tires on to them. I would use the stock rims and tires in the summer, then my basic rims and good winter tires in the winter.

    Sifting through the Model S forum, it seems that it is difficult to get cheap steel rims that size and weight rating which is why people still use alloys throughout the winter.

    I'm hoping with the lower price point, smaller wheel size and lighter vehicle weight of the Model 3 that it will be possible to mount something cheap and effective on there. Having never bought a set of rims before (my only car to date came with a set of mounted winter tires), I'm fairly ignorant as to how to size them and get proper weight ratings. I know we're on conjecture at the moment as final specs haven't been released, but I'm just looking for a ballpark cost (Canadian dollars) and if steel is possible or if I'll have to go alloy. I'm assuming that the final base model won't be a staggered set-up.

    For clarity, my goals here are:
    • Get something that is easy on the pocket book to mount good winter tires on.
    • I don't care about aesthetics.
    • I don't care about driving performance (so long as they are safe, reliable and pothole resistant).
    • I don't mind a minor range hit for the heavier rims.
    Thanks for any input you can provide!
     
  2. Jayc

    Jayc Member

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    I will be getting standard (smaller) wheels because they are more curb impact resistant, gives a slightly better range, tyres are cheaper, produces less road noise. Don't see the benefit in sacrificing all that for a slight improvement in aesthetics and handling.
     
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  3. melindav

    melindav ☰ reserved

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    it will depend on the bolt pattern and disk brake clearance needed.
     
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  4. 03DSG

    03DSG Member

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    So true especially on our frost heaved Canadian roads! As far as better handling goes you don't see any race cars with big diameter rims and super low profile tires. For a given diameter the larger wheel/low profile tire weighs more and has more rotating mass than the smaller wheel/ higher profile tire. It increases unsprung weight and affects steeering input. All negative to handling.
     
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  5. CSFTN

    CSFTN Member

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    I don't like being critical of another poster ... but, how can you ask this question, when the car has not yet been made, so no one can answer the question?

    If you are in fact asking for opinions, then that is a different matter. Yes, IMO Tire Rack (amongst others) will almost certainly make available a cheap aftermarket wheel for use with winter tires.
     
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  6. ChooseGreen

    ChooseGreen Member

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    True. I'm somewhat of a car part ignoramus and am trying to get a ballpark of how much a set of rims will set me back. I know with my basic Honda Civic I can get a set of winter tires mounted on rims for < $1000 CAD. I get the impression that with the bigger wheel size, heavier vehicle weight and higher performance capability of the Model 3 it will be more expensive. But $2000? $3000? I really don't know.
     
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  7. CSFTN

    CSFTN Member

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    #7 CSFTN, Nov 27, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
    Makes sense. In order to get a rough idea on cost, I would suggest going to tirerack.com or similar and look for a winter set compatible with a BMW 3 series, without the performance pack (in BMW world, the performance pack usually includes unusually large front brakes, which limits the wheels that are compatible. Since the Model 3 will not have a forward bias of weight during breaking compared to any ICE car, the front brakes can and will be smaller with at least as good performance).

    That being said, I happen to be storing a pretty decent set for my F10 BMW in my attic ... ;)

    Edit: don't look at the runflat tires. Only the traditional type. I think its a good likelihood that Tesla will continue to avoid RFs, as have almost all manufacturers other than BMW. Here's a good starting point: http://www.tirerack.com/snow/WinterPackageMain.jsp?autoMake=BMW&autoModel=328i+Sedan&autoYear=2015&autoModClar=Base+Model
     
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  8. mspohr

    mspohr Active Member

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    I haven't been able to find steel rims for any of my cars for a long time now. I have been able to buy inexpensive alloy rims, however.
    With my Model S, I just bought the factory set of winter tires and rims with the car when it was new and I have been happy with them. (Starting the third winter on them)
    I understand that you are anxious to get started on the project but since it's going to be at least a year before Model 3s are available, I think it's safe to wait. All will be explained in time.
    Patience, grasshopper.
     
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  9. ChooseGreen

    ChooseGreen Member

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    Awesome @CSFTN, that is the sort of ballpark I was looking for. I'll take a look around using that to get rough pricing ideas.

    Thanks!
     
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  10. ChooseGreen

    ChooseGreen Member

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    That's interesting @mspohr, thanks for the input. My (basic) understanding is the only downsides of steel wheels are that they are heavier, don't look as nice, and perhaps corrode a bit quicker, but that doesn't matter much in the lifetime of the wheels.

    Is it that alloys are becoming cheaper now? Is it that EVs are that much heavier and therefore steel wheels have to be beefed up and make the steel wheels more expensive (i.e. in line with alloys anyway)? Is it that EVs are higher performance so benefit more from having a higher performance wheel? Or is it that all Teslas to date are luxury vehicles and as such their clientele tend to favour nicer-looking, higher performance rims and don't mind a price increase.

    I'm curious on any insight on the above!
     
  11. CSFTN

    CSFTN Member

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    Alloys now being churned out in huge volumes in Chinese factories has killed the demand for steel rims.
     
  12. Trips

    Trips Member

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    If the premium wheels are still $4,500 you will find people getting the basic rim and selling it so they can buy aftermarket.
     
  13. ChooseGreen

    ChooseGreen Member

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    Interesting insight. That explains why I was getting confused in my searches if my underlying assumptions were wrong.

    Are there any concerns with safety, durability, reliability, with these rims flooding the market? I keep hearing things along the lines of "cracked my wheel on a pot hole because they're alloys" whereas a steel wheel would have just bent and could be bent back by a shop. Not sure if that is the exception or the rule though.
     
  14. Snow Drift

    Snow Drift Member

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    I don't get the confusion? When the car comes out just go to Tire Rack and buy a cheap set of rims (17's start around $90 each) and some great snow tires (Blizzak WS80 are $109 each).

    The website will tell you the proper offset and width to fit the stock brakes

    You should not run 19-21" rims in the winter. The M3 will probably come with 18 or 19" rims stock, so go an inch smaller.
     
  15. Zoomit

    Zoomit Member

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    I've speculated that the standard wheel and tire size will be 18x8 with 235/45-18. Here's that thread: Standard Wheel/Tire Size for Model 3

    For winter, a minus one set might be 17x7.5 wheels with 225/55-17 tires. The Blizzak WS80's from Tire Rack are $522 per set.
    A minus two set, possible if the calipers clear the rim, might be 16x7.5 wheels with 225/60-16 tires. The WS80's in this size are $426 per set.

    Here's a good tool to compare wheel and tire specs: Custom rims, wheel tire packages for your ride - RIMSnTIRES.com
     
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